Categorized | National, Politics

Colorado Legalizes Recreational Use of Marijuana

 

Amendment 64 Passes

 

Matt Ferner
Huffington Post

 

The Rocky Mountain High State just got a whole lot higher.

On Tuesday night, Amendment 64 — the measure seeking the legalization of marijuana for recreational use by adults — was passed by Colorado voters, making Colorado
the first state to end marijuana prohibition in the United States.

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, a vocal opponent to the measure, reacted to the passage of A64 in a statement late Tuesday night:

“The voters have spoken and we have to respect their will.  This will be a complicated process, but we intend to follow through.

That said, federal law still says marijuana is an illegal drug– so don’t break out the Cheetos or  Gold Fish too quickly.”

The passage of the state measure is without historical precedent and the consequences will likely be closely-watched around the world.  This is the second time Colorado voted on legal weed: in 2006 Coloradans voted the measure down; yesterday, it passed.

Although Colorado “legalized it,” it will be several months, perhaps as long as a year, before Colorado adults 21-and-over can enjoy the legal sale of marijuana.  However, the parts of the amendment related to individual behavior will go into effect as soon as Governor Hickenlooper certifies the results of the vote, The Colorado Independent reported.

It’s a huge victory for the Campaign To Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol, the pro-pot group behind Amendment 64.

“Over the past eight years in Colorado, we have argued that it is irrational to punish adults for choosing to use a product that is far less harmful than alcohol,” Mason Tvert, co-director of the campaign, said in a statement.

On the same night that Colorado passed Amendment 64, Washington state passed Initiative 502 which regulates and taxes sales of small amounts of marijuana for adults, The Associated Press reported. Oregon also had a similar recreational marijuana measure on the ballot.

Under Colorado’s Amendment 64, marijuana is taxed and regulated similar to alcohol and tobacco.  According to the Associated Press, analysts project that that tax revenue could generate somewhere between $5 million and $22 million a year in the state.  An economist whose study was funded by a pro-pot group projects as much as a $60 million boost by 2017.

Brian Vicente, also a co-director of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana, said in a statement:

Today, the people of Colorado have rejected the failed policy of marijuana prohibition.

Thanks to their votes, we will now reap the benefits of regulation. We will create new jobs, generation million of dollars in tax revenue, and allow law enforcement to focus on serious crimes.

It would certainly be a travesty if the Obama administration used its power to impose marijuana prohibition upon a state whose people have declared, through the democratic process, that they want it to end.”

The big unknown still is if the federal government will allow a regulated marijuana market to take shape.

Attorney General Eric Holder, who was a vocal opponent of California’s legalization initiative in 2010 saying he would “vigorously enforce” federal marijuana prohibition, has continued to remain silent on the issue this year.

In a report published Sunday by NBC News, President Obama’s former senior drug policy advisor, Dr. Kevin Sabet,  said that if the marijuana initiatives pass, a war will be incited between the federal government and the states that pass them.

“Once these states actually try to implement these laws, we will see an effort by the feds to shut it down,” Sabet said.

The DOJ has yet to formally announce its enforcement intentions, however, Deputy Attorney General James Cole said during a recent appearance on 60 Minutes that, “We’re going to take a look at whether or not there are dangers to the community from the sale of marijuana and we’re going to go after those dangers,” Reuters reported.

(Mr. Ferner’s article has been abridged.  You can read his full article here)

* * * * * * *

Stunned by an Obama win, Fox News Channel anchor Shepard Smith was equally at a loss for words describing Colorado’s historic cannabis vote last night.  He asked during the final election results, “Wait– did you just say Colorado legalized marijuana?” into his earphone with a look of confused disbelief before returning to his viewers with a pregnant pause, blinking, and not knowing what to say.  It was an awkward moment for Shepard as he stared in apparent discombobulation.

We imagine US Northern District Attorney Melinda Haag was equally baffled as well.

(Posted by Skippy Massey)

Leave a Reply

HumSentinel on Twitter

RSS Progressive Review

  • Department of Good Stuff
    […]
  • Why people hate the federal government
    Take Part - Out with the cupcakes, in with the fruit cups.At least that’s what the USDA envisioned when it came up with the “Smart Snacks in School” standards as part of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. The guidelines—which set rules for treats sold on K–12 campuses outside the cafeteria during school hours, or “competitive foods”—went into effect […]
  • Why you shouldn't vote for a corporate executive
    Sam Smith - There is a widespread myth that corporate executives are exquisitely prepared to run other things, like community organizations, states or our nation.  This is a myth broadly enabled by large corporate media but it makes little sense. Here's why:Corporate executives can fire people, move them to new jobs, promote or demote them. You can […]
  • Preserving a Jewish state or the Jewish soul?
    From 50 years of our overstocked archivesSam Smith, 2006 - Vigdor Lieberman that nasty member of the Israel cabinet, wants to get rid of the Arabs so his country can remain a Jewish state. It's not a new idea; shoving Arabs around helped Israel get started. And it didn't work all that well. Fifty years of misery as the Israelis and the Arabs compet […]
  • Mid and late career teachers underpaid
    Center for American Progress: Mid- and late-career teacher base salaries are painfully low in many states. In Colorado, teachers with a graduate degree and 10 years of experience make less than a trucker in the state. In Oklahoma, teachers with 15 years of experience and a master’s degree make less than sheet metal workers. And teachers in Georgia with 10 ye […]
  • Photo of the day
    L'Osservatore Romano photo of Pope having lunch with Vatican workers […]
  • Stupid Washington Post tricks
    James Zogby, Arab American Institute - As the Israeli ground offensive was beginning, the [Washington] Post featured a front page headline, in large type, reading "Two Israelis Killed in Gaza Clash." In smaller type there was a subhead, "Death toll tops 330 as Hamas militants step up attacks." The story began, "Hamas militants intens […]
  • Furthermore. . .
    Gaza death toll now over 1,000Top Palestinian officials have accused Israel of war crimes in Gaza, filing a complaint Friday to the International Criminal Court in The Hague. […]
  • 2500 Ground Zero responders have come down with cancer
    NY Post - More than 2,500 Ground Zero rescuers and responders have come down with cancer, and a growing number are seeking compensation for their illnesses, The Post has learned.The grim toll has skyrocketed from the 1,140 cancer cases reported last year.In its latest tally, the World Trade Center Health Program at Mount Sinai Hospital counts 1,655 responder […]
  • Millenials down on marriage
    Alternet - | In a new Pew poll, researchers asked people of all ages how they felt about marriage and having kids. One question asked if society is better off if people made these goals a priority.....For respondents over 65, a strong 61 percent said yes, it’s in society’s best interest to prioritize marriage and kids. But that number gradually declined for […]
  • A bipartisan cause: universal income
    David Atkins, Washington Monthly -  One of the beautiful things about universal basic income: it has legitimate cross-partisan appeal, even if it seems wacky at first glance to centrists (who are often the very last people to recognize a good policy idea when they see one.)To a conservative, a direct money grant is an opportunity to shed cumbersome governmen […]
  • Pocket paradigms
    Unfortunately, complex failing systems have little capacity to save themselves. In part this is because the solutions come from the same source as the problem. The public rarely questions the common provenance; official Washington and the media honor it. Even a failure as miserable as that of Vietnam had little effect on the careers of its major protagonists […]
  • Word
    I believe there are more instances of the abridgement of freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments by those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations -- James Madison […]
  • Mid East paradigms
    From 50 years of our overstocked archivesIsrael is a state like all the rest. AIPAC is just another political group like the National Rifle Association. It is not a religion but one more Washington lobby corrupting the political process and making American voters less powerful. The policy of the Israeli government is clearly distinguishable from the theology […]
  • Bringing politics home
    From 50 years of our overstocked archivesSam Smith[From Shadows of Hope, 1994]In 1816, Columbus, Ohio, had one city councilmember for every hundred residents. By 1840 there was one for every thousand residents. By 1872 the figure had dwindled to one to every five thousand. By 1974, there was one councilmember for every 55,000 people.The first US congressiona […]